Prompt: In the early 19th century, Americans sought to resolve their political disputes through compromise, yet by 1860 this no longer seemed possible. Analyze the reasons for this change. As time passed the rapidly changing society in the nineteenth century of development and growth, Americans witnessed a threat to the Union. The nation was founded by compromises of the past founding fathers, and since that time, compromise has kept the nation together. During this time, the north underwent major social, economic, and industrial changes known as the Antebellum Period.
‘The American Revolution and the Irony of Slavery’ The American Revolution redefined economic, political and religious freedom in colonial America and around the world. Americans of the revolutionary generation were preoccupied with the social conditions of freedom. The contradiction between freedom and slavery seem so apparent that it makes it difficult to understand the obstacles to abolition. During the revolutionary era slavery became the focus of international debate for the first time in world history. The United States changed dramatically in a very short time after the Revolution, the transition was not an easy one, militarily, politically, and culturally.
There was a dispute between free-states and slave states over the new territory, California, though the issue was temporally fixed with the Compromise of 1850. Another dispute was over the rights of the states; this argument resulted in the idea of nullification, allowing states to have the right to rule federal acts unconstitutional. The last spark was ignited when President Lincoln, who supported the abolitionist movement, was elected in 1860, thus, creating South Carolina to issue its Declaration of Independence, generating the Confederacy, and later led to the American Civil War. The single most important reason war was averted for so long was the many compromises made in the years before that attempted to keep the south and north content in the house and senate. With the United States expanding its territory to the west, balancing the free and slaves states, as well as the growing conflict over slavery generated more problems.
During the mid 1800’s many Americans began to have mix feelings over the issue of slavery. Many northern Americans believed that slavery was morally wrong and that it was an evil. Southerners on the other hand believed it was a good for the economy as well as for commerce. This great split of attitudes between the north and the south eventually led to threat of the civil war. The North saw the issue of slavery as an evil.
The Effectiveness of Political Compromise From the beginning of the United States, sectional differences had existed between the North and South. During the tumultuous years leading up to the Civil War, however, these differences became so serious that they threatened to divide the Union. The political compromises made in the period between 1820 and 1861 were effective only in reducing sectional tensions for a limited amount of time as they avoided the bigger issues and contradicted each other as evidenced by the Missouri Compromise, the case of Dred Scott v. Stanford, and the Compromise of 1850. There were many issues dividing the North and the South, but the most controversial by far was slavery. Slavery was seen as a moral abomination in the North and as a way of life in the South.
Problems with the Constitution and the Failure of the Union Soon after the Constitution was created, two areas began to grow very different opinions and concerns that were yet to be answered. In the 1850’s the Constitution was manipulated by the people based on their sectional interests and the vagueness surrounding the issue of slavery. This indifference allowed it to be interpreted in many different ways with the Constitution stirring many debates. The issue of property vs. people, the power of congress over the states, and external pressures on the politicians from their supporters were all sources of sectional discord and ultimately contributed to the failure of the union the Constitution had created. The north, full of abolitionists, believed that slavery was an injustice and no longer needed for the growth and prosperity of America.
In Nash’s article, many Aristocrats feared the impact the riots would have on other groups such as those that are slaved. In primary source 8 in the book of Hollitz, it is fair to believe that it was a contradiction of workers wanting “freedom” from the British when slavery was still active. Notice in the Nash’s earlier writing that the freedom of slaves was one of the “fears” that was brought up due to the actions of arising mobs. Even then it was known between many others that this upheaval was a walking
After that, Congress held the power to influence the American macrocosm of its society but internal shifting of power created made Congress into a veritable seesaw. The Congress' Reconstruction efforts failed because of the political shifts in power that caused the issues of remerging to jump one way or another, hate crimes and groups that were allowed to fester, and the social willingness to accept and encourage segregation. In the heated Congressional meets of the Reconstruction, southern Democrats and northern Republicans were at a battle with one another, with each gaining ground and then falling back. The Radical Republicans, as they came to be known, were the majority party rule before the Amnesty Acts of 1872 and were pro-war, pro-abolitionist and pro-freedmen’s rights. Such things passed under them were the Freedmen’s Bureau and the Civil Rights Acts of 1866 both of which were ultimately vetoed by President Johnson, a pro-slavery racist and the new member of the Republican hit list.
Because the South felt that the North was getting richer at their expense, John C. Calhoun, the vice-president and South Carolina native, created a nullification theory that argued for the states’ right to nullify a federal law it found unconstitutional. When the Tariff of 1828 was issued, South Carolina sought to nullify it and even threatened to secede from the Union. The infuriated Jackson urged Congress to pass the Force Bill, which allowed the federal government to use military force if state authorities resisted paying proper duties, however, Henry Clay devised a compromise to settle the dispute. South Carolina gave up, yet Jackson’s stubbornness had almost pushed a state to secede from the Union. Jackson acted too hastily and forcefully, and if not for Clay, there would have been civil strife.
The American Revolution was a result of the colonists unrest caused by their abhorrence towards their British Mother Country. For several centuries the colonies had been subject to rule by the English Crown and it’s Parliament. They no longer wanted to be controlled by a country an ocean away, and in turn sought independence. A huge factor in the start of the American Revolution was the French and Indian War that changed the age-old bond between the colonies and England. Decades of conflict followed, starting with the revolt as a result of the Stamp Act in 1765, leading to the eruption of war in 1775.